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5 Real Life Detectives Who Put Sherlock Holmes to Shame

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We all love a good crime story that has a brave detective solving what seems to be an unsolvable mystery. But for some real-life detectives, they’ve actually lived these stories, solving some of the biggest cases of their time. Here we introduce to you five real detectives who put Sherlock Holmes to shame with their brilliant tactics and innovative work.

Ellis Parker

Ellis Parker was called “America’s Sherlock Holmes” for his brilliant detective work. He was so well respected he would often receive letters from professional lawmen asking for advice on how to catch criminals. He consulted on so many cases that he had many stories written about the crimes and became a well-respected man. His most famous case was the “Case of the Pickled Corpse” that is still known today for its early forensics work and scrupulous detective work.

Izzy Einstein And Moe Smith

These two famous New York detectives were known as the “Premier Booze Detectives” during Prohibition. They gained a reputation for creating disguises that allowed them to hide in plain sight. Their recipe for catching criminals was a mix of pure genius, along with a vast knowledge of foreign languages, and an in-depth understanding of how things operated in the New York City underworld. Over their career they managed to arrest over 4,000 criminals and confiscate approximately five million bottles of illegal booze throughout New York, making them the true premiere Prohibition detectives of their time.

Raymond Schindler

Raymond Schindler, head of the Schindler National Detective Agency in New York, was known all across the country as one of the leading private eyes in the 40’s and 50’s. He was most known for being one of the first detectives to use the dictograph – a recording device that was the latest technology in those days. He was a rich detective who was known to celebrate his own fame and fortune. He loved parties, fine dining, and beautiful women – all very akin to the fictional character James Bond. He even had a biography movie showcasing his elaborate life.

Kate Warne

Known as the first female detective in the US, Kate Warne was a true detective legend. She worked on hundreds of cases for the Pinkerton agency in the 1850’s and was one of the best detectives at creating disguises to catch criminals. She did some of her best work during the American Civil War as a covert war intelligence-gathering operative, where she was able to penetrate into social circles and pull secrets from fellow women to help solve cases. Her work set the bar for female detectives around the world.

John Edgar Hoover

As Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the early 1920’s, J. Edgar Hoover helped to build the FBI to what it is now today. He served six presidents through his career, and lead counterintelligence, counterespionage, and counter-sabotage investigations through the Cold War and World War II to protect the US. He believed that the future of crime detection lay in scientific innovation and introduced advanced intelligence-gathering techniques that had never been seen before. Many of his practices are still used today, and he was also involved in developing the fingerprinting file that matched fingerprints to crime scenes.

Looking to become a real-life detective legend? Talk to us at Smith Investigation Agency – we have the training courses you need to become the next real-life Sherlock Holmes.

About the Author

Whitney Joy Smith

Founder of The Smith Investigation Agency in 2014, Whitney Joy Smith’s extensive background as a private investigator is matched only by her passion for the role. A graduate of several respected institutions, including Northwest Florida State College and George Brown College, her early years in life were spent between Canada and the United States. This education, along with her formative years as a private investigator in various agencies, informed much of her knowledge of private investigative laws, regulations, and operating standards in both countries.

The recipient of numerous industry awards and accolades, including the Consumers Choice Award, Best in Ottawa, and many others, Whitney takes pride in working closely with her ever-growing agency to raise the bar, maintain compliance, and meet the investigative needs of clients. Whitney is active in various membership and supporting roles, including the CPIRC, CBN, CAPI, Canadian Women’s Chamber of Commerce, and many others. Her experience-driven, thought-provoking articles have been featured in everything from Readers Digest to Business News Daily, and she strives to continually redefine standards for those in the private investigative and security fields. Learn more about Whitney and the team at The Smith Investigation Agency today.

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